Friday, 06 December 2019 14:17

Advent Prayer

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In Psalm 42, a deer ‘longs’ for ‘streams.’ This seems unusual. Most deer know where water is and don’t really long for water. In a familiar manner, the deer normally approaches the water gingerly, as if he is appreciating it; maybe he is listening to the pleasant sound of water cascading along the stream’s banks, or, he is imagining the taste of the water and how it will quench the deer’s thirst. 

But, in Psalm 42, it’s possible that the deer does not have the luxury of experiencing a known stream. For some reason, it is presently lost, and the stream seems, or is unattainable. And so, if I’m the deer, I want to satisfy my thirst and go to the stream. It will quench my thirst, address my anxiety, and renew my person. What will I do? 

If I analyze my options, I first want to discover why I am so distant from the stream, from our Lord, from His Mother’s mantle? After all, how can I know what to do if I don’t know why I am struggling in the first place? Fortunately, God gives me the reasoning skills to discern this. And so I must, as I can’t stand being so thirsty.

Possibly, I thirst because of my sin. Because I sin often,  I break my bond of love with Jesus. I lose sight of him, lose focus, and become lost. I have forgotten to make Him the centerpiece, forgotten the joy of spending time adoring, listening, and conversing with Him. Or, maybe I’ve stopped emulating the number one role model. His love teachings have been forgotten or ignored; I am truly lost and so very thirsty.  And what about his Mommy?  I have not asked the Blessed Mother for Her assistance in this life. No. I am doing whatever comes to my mind and remain adrift and apart from the only love that satisfies. 

It is here, the emptiness of sin, ego, and pride, that God gives me the gift of my senses. I know something is wrong. Something is off and I suffer. I suffer spiritually and physically as I thirst for Christ. It is this thirst and associate pains from it that provide impetus for change. Why not embark upon a healing, positive change by praying for this grace:

‘Lord, help me to address the suffering that I have caused myself; excuse my weakness and replace it with the grace to rediscover and drench myself in Your waters of life, Your endless love for me.’  

Today’s Advent stream is the coming of the Baby Jesus. In this Child, I find safety, rest, hope, renewal, the omission of sin, and energy to do His holy will.

It is the time of anticipation when the Word becomes flesh in a tiny Baby. I can now take in all of the Holy Spirit, His words, by pondering the Christ Baby and His Mother who never complains, His Mother who obeys and lives the holy life of sacrificial love. 

It is in this tiny Baby that rests my salvation and that of all souls. And in this pondering of a Baby, am I not in a state of grace? I am not saying I won’t sin. After all, I am weak, I am a sinner. 

No, what I am saying is, that while in prayer, contemplating the Christ-Baby, I cannot sin at that moment. I am in order because I have a holy focus that disallows me to sin, at that moment. For it is in this Child, in the momentary contemplation of Who this Child is and what He means that I cannot sin. For my thoughts and heart, at this moment, are purely centered on the love pouring out of the holiest of babies. What could be more sin’s anti-thesis than this Holy Infant’s image and prayer experience? It is the best pondering I can do. 

DaneBairdDane Baird has been a witness member of the Home of the Mother for over 3 years. He has two daughters, Jean and Susannah. The newest addition to the family is Halo, wonder-dog! His profession is teaching autistic children and he enjoys acting in several parish and diocesan ministries, as well as supporting the Home of the Mother.

His blog is called "Fathers Floreat!" Floreat is a word he heard on retreat, it is latin for to flourish, to bloom. Men should be blossoming according to God's plan.